Welcome to OXTEXT
OXTEXT is an innovative programme of research that aims to better understand, and development management approaches for, bipolar disorder.
Our research is organised around a simple-to-use web-based self-monitoring system known as True Colours.
More specifically our research aims to:
- look at how self-monitoring of mood may be able to benefit people with bipolar disorder, and
- explore what patients’ self-monitoring data, collected over time, can tell us about the nature of bipolar disorder.
We also support a number of other research initiatives, most of which focus on gaining a better understanding of bipolar disorder.
Depression and mania/hypomania fluctuate over time in bipolar disorder
What is bipolar disorder?
Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depressive illness, affects about 1 in 100 people and is characterised by recurrent episodes of mania and major depression. An affected person's mood can vary from excessively elated mood (mania) to very low mood (depression). In between episodes, mood is often normal, although in some people remains rather unstable.
The frequency and severity of mood swings varies - some people have milder forms of the disorder and some people are more severely affected. Many people with bipolar disorder have long periods of normal mood when they are unaffected by their illness. Others experience rapidly changing moods or persistent low moods that have a marked effect on their quality of life. Although manic and depressive mood swings are the most common, sometimes mixed states occur in which a person experiences symptoms of mania and depression at the same time.
There is no cure for bipolar disorder but there are a number of ways, including medicines and psychological therapies, to minimise the impact of the illness of people's lives and on the live's of those around them.
To learn more about bipolar disorder, follow the link here, which also contains a video of Professor John Geddes speaking about bipolar disorder.
How can 'True Colours' mood monitoring help a person with bipolar disorder?
The idea is that True Colours helps a person with bipolar disorder to live their life by helping them monitor their mood. Someone using True Colours will regularly (for example, once a week) record their recent mood by answering simple questions. Any major events or changes in medical treatment can be logged as well.
By carefully tracking changes of mood, patterns begin to emerge. Observing and reflecting on these patterns can enable people to learn more about their condition. In this way, we believe self-monitoring can help give people more control over their lives. Clinicians can also find it helpful to look at their patients' graphs and discuss patterns with them.
To see the external website for True Colours, which contains more information about the system and frequently asked questions, click here.
Getting in touch with us
If you have been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and might be interested in participating in our research, we would like to hear from you. Please visit the page on Participating in our research or, if you are not sure who to contact, use the email or phone number below.
Phone: 01865 613131